Newbie on SWCG - help!

Mdragger88

Bronze Supporter
Jun 1, 2018
1,475
Hernando, Ms
My last intex pool had a bleached area because i put a floater in while i was filling & then realized about 3/4 of the way the pool was unlevel so I started draining & went in the house but forgot to remove the floater! 😩
live & learn..
 

Shane112358

Well-known member
Dec 31, 2012
47
Santa Barbara, CA
If it makes you feel any better, I have the same stain on my pool (2 day old pebble!!!). Similar liquid CYA incident. I like to say: all pools have birthmarks (some from builder, some from you... they just do). You wouldn't love your kids/wife any less for their birthmarks!

Or... it's your badge of initiation into pool care! We all have 'em. My sleeve is crowded with them!!

Run the pump 24 hours a day, at least for a day or two, that'll mix in the CYA. Test tomorrow or Thursday (when you get your kit, or do you already have it?) to check your FC and CYA levels. Add liquid chlorine according to our FC/CYA chart, then turn on the SWG and check it each day at the same time, adding LC as needed to restore your FC, adjust SWG each day, until the SWG is holding! You'll have this sorted out in a few days. No worries. Post a full suite of test results here for any additional dosing advice.
Thanks for the advice, I will work on that. I did just post test results, I added the CYA as a liquid and it was mixed around pretty well for an hour or so before testing. Let me know what you think.
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
7,744
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Great. Now @Texas Splash has something to work with! Tip: post CC, not TC (though FC + CC = TC). And after a bit of practice, it wouldn't be "4-5," but either 4 or 5. Congrats on getting the kit. And yes, you now know why we rag so much about it.
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Here are results. I see why getting these test kits are key. Those strips were WAAAAY off.
FC 4-5ppm
TC 4-5ppm
pH 8
TA 300ppm
CYA 50ppm
Good to have real numbers. :goodjob: Shane, didn't you say you're in SOCAL? I'm surprised about the TA. I expect that in other locations but not CA. Let's confirm. Did you have any problems doing the TA? 2 drops of #7, 5 drops of #8, then count #9 drops until the solution goes Barbie pink and multiply by 10? Just want to make sure. Your number would mean it took 30 drops. Sometimes new TA bottles get a bit of static electricity on them. You might need to wipe the tips of the #8 and #9 a few times since they are new. Maybe you got the TA number mixed up with the CH? That would make more sense since I don't see a CH number.

Salt pools do best with a CYA of 70 - 80, but for now let's wait on increasing the CYA. FC seems to be in a good place as long as it's the FC and nothing else from the powder & drops (FAS-DPD) testing. Definitely lower the pH now to about 7.5-7.6 with muriatic acid.
 

Shane112358

Well-known member
Dec 31, 2012
47
Santa Barbara, CA
Good to have real numbers. :goodjob: Shane, didn't you say you're in SOCAL? I'm surprised about the TA. I expect that in other locations but not CA. Let's confirm. Did you have any problems doing the TA? 2 drops of #7, 5 drops of #8, then count #9 drops until the solution goes Barbie pink and multiply by 10? Just want to make sure. Your number would mean it took 30 drops. Sometimes new TA bottles get a bit of static electricity on them. You might need to wipe the tips of the #8 and #9 a few times since they are new. Maybe you got the TA number mixed up with the CH? That wold make more sense since I don't see a CH number.

Salt pools do best with a CYA of 70 - 80, but for now let's wait on increasing the CYA. FC seems to be in a good place as long as it's the FC and nothing else from the powder & drops (FAS-DPD) testing. Definitely lower the pH now to about 7.5-7.6 with muriatic acid.
Correct, 2 of 007, 5 of 008, added 30 drops of 009 while swirling to get it to turn to very clear pink. I did not do CH. I was also surprised by this since the test strip showed TA off-scale low. But I now know those test strips are Crud so I figured it is what it is. Yes, I'm in CA - Santa Barbara. I looked up a municipal water report from 2 years ago and it shows surface water alkalinity at 150ppm, ground water alkalinity at 320 ppm. LA county water is like 70ppm. SB is quite different. Does that explain it? If not I can re-do it.
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Wow. Okay then. You'll need to slowly work on lowering the TA. It works like this. When the pH hits 8.0, you knock it down hard with muriatic acid to about 7.0-7.2. Then aerate the water which naturally increases the pH but doesn't touch the TA and leaves it a little lower. Over time using that method, the TA will fall lower & lower. You should look to getting the TA down to about 70-80 ideally which will help prevent the pH from rising so fast.

Why is that important? Summer water temp, TA, pH, and CH combine to develop the "CSI" (see PoolMath) which can tell you if the pool is subject to scale. A low CH is no matter to your vinyl, but a high CH and/or CSI is for scale to the liner and SWG cell plates. So next time you post numbers, I would include the CH for that reason.

Since you had tabs in there before, I would test the CYA in another 3-4 days to see if the CYA is truly at 50 or if it tried to creep-up a bit. If it's still at 50 in a few days, then it should be safe to increase the CYA tpo 70.

To prevent algae, always compare your FC to the CYA as noted on the FC/CYA Chart. You're in control now.
 

Shane112358

Well-known member
Dec 31, 2012
47
Santa Barbara, CA
I tested pH again, got 8.0 again and furthermore took 3 drops of 015 to get to 7.5, so that calls for 22oz of Muriatic Acid, I guess...does that sound right? It took 6 drops to get down to 7.2.
 

Shane112358

Well-known member
Dec 31, 2012
47
Santa Barbara, CA
I always use the PoolMath for my dosages, but I am getting about 98 ounces of MA to lower the pH from 8.0 - 7.0. Or about 66 ounces (just over 2 quarts) if you only want to take the pH to 7.2. To make any impact on the TA, you have to take the pH down that low.
Scale is a huge issue here. I get scale on everything in the house. Shower door, espresso maker, "clean" glasses out of dishwasher, bathtub spigot... so I am not surprised to hear that's something I need to deal with. I'll get the MA and start playing. I'm also using pool math and it's telling me 71 oz of 29% MA.
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
7,744
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
If helpful... haven't tested it for a couple years, but when I did my fill was TA:230... I'm in Central CA. I guess it depends on where the city/county is buying their water.
 
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Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
7,744
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
In case @Texas Splash doesn't get back to you tonight, your FC is way too low. If you're trying to move your FC up using your SWG, that will take too long and you could get an algae outbreak waiting for that to happen. An SWG is designed to maintain your FC once you get it to the proper level, it can't really move FC all the much. Use liquid chlorine right away to get your FC where it's supposed to be, then adjust your SWG to keep it there. If the FC drops, dose with chlorine again, and re-adjust your SWG. You keep doing that until the SWG can maintain the FC level.

We've got some hot days ahead, so don't wait on that chlorine...
 
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Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
7,744
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I really don't want to step on @Texas Splash's advice, as he is the expert and way better at the chemistry than me (too many cooks and all that). But I know he would point you here for determining your FC level for your type of pool:
Chlorine / CYA Chart - Trouble Free Pool

And here. Two resources you should bookmark and refer to often:
 

Shane112358

Well-known member
Dec 31, 2012
47
Santa Barbara, CA
Alright, well I added some more chlorine tabs (this time I made it into a water solution first!), and will check CYA and FC in a few hours, adding CYA to get up to 70. I'm out of chlorine now but I think I added enough to get in the ballpark of 4-5....I will see.
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
7,744
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Depending on how you add it, the type of CYA and your circulation, CYA can take a while to show up in a test. "A few hours" might not be enough. Overnight at least, sometimes longer. Go slow with that, so you don't overshoot the target. The only way to bring CYA back down is to exchange water out of the pool. Run the pump 24/7 until you're confident you have an accurate test result for CYA, a lower speed is fine for that, if ya got one.